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Vintage Speakers

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Wel, I am of the LS3/5a chapel.


I bought my pair 35 years ago when I was a student, along with a Quad 303 and a Thorens TD160 turntable.

All three have been providing me with utter musical pleasure.

They are still with me today, running as happily as ever.

At this very moment, I am listening to Eva Cassidy and they all sound quite alive to me!

I have of course tweaked my system a bit since then, adding a passive preamp, a Ciúnas USB DAC and a Mac Mini/Audirvana+.


Frankly, what's to change about it?

A refurb of the amp, maybe?

If it was me, I'd check out refurbs of all the equipment: belts, capacitors, cables, etc. I think it will only improve your system.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +>Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Strip/Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three (on their own electric circuit) >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Path: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Cayin iDAC6 MKII (tube mode) (XLR)>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: Ropieee (RPi3b+ with touchscreen) + Schiit Modi3E to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Anyone still have vintage speakers in their system that they love?


I think it's a fair description to say I love my Klipsch Cornwalls. Not strictly vintage as they (CW IIIs) were brand new in February this year, but certainly a speaker with vintage heritage and a totally beguiling listen.

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Spica TC50.


I no longer have these but they are great and still cheap on E$Bay.


Used them with a Conrad Johnson PV3 and a Musical Concepts modded Hafler 220.


The PV3 was my "gateway drug" for the long path down Audiophilia...




Yep. That little CJ hooked a LOT of folks on great hifi. Me being one of them.


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  • 3 weeks later...

My go to passive speakers are Thiel CS-3.5. First heard them at Nickolson Audio in around 1989. The setup killed my Superphon pre/amp and Celestion SL6 system at home. Most of it was definately the speakers.

Was back in Nashville a year or two later and went back. Listened to the 2.2, 3.6 and CS-5. Might back been setup but all three lacked the magic of the CS-3.5.

Picked up a pair aabout five years ago. The owner said the highs were too soft for his taste. Figured his ears were shot since they are a little hot on top. Loaded in a truck stop parking lot. Once home they were soft. Into the closet, was into active speakers at the time.

Lugged up a few years later, gave a listen. Both tweeters were dead. Replaced with the last generation of the D-28 tweeters and never looked back. These were the last of the Thiels using third party drivers. Must be the magic is in the top of the line drivers..

I have listened to many newer speakers. None have been better. Most are worse.


2012 Mac Mini, i5 - 2.5 GHz, 16 GB RAM. SSD,  PM/PV software, Focusrite Clarett 4Pre 4 channel interface. Daysequerra M4.0X Broadcast monitor., My_Ref Evolution rev a , Klipsch La Scala II, Blue Sky Sub 12

Clarett used as ADC for vinyl rips.

Corning Optical Thunderbolt cable used to connect computer to 4Pre. Dac fed by iFi iPower and Noise Trapper isolation transformer. 

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My first introduction to High End audio was at my uncle's house (late 70s): ESS Heil AMT-1 speakers, driven by Phase Linear pre-power and a Thorens TD124 with SME arm or a Revox Tape deck as sources. When he bought new speakers in 1982, I got the Heils from him and held on to them for 10 more years. Other than a re-foam, they kept on delivering.

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A/D/S L1290 circa 1984, a neighbor purchased them new

Always preferred them to my then Klipsch LaScala's

They have been mine since 2000


Still in use in one of my main systems:

Bryston BDP-1 / Sherbourn PRE-1 / Emotiva XDA-1 / Emotiva XPA-1's


A friend's dad had those ADS speakers. I was selling hi-fi gear at the time and sold them on consignment, upgrading him to a pair of KEF 104/2's. I'd love to have either of them around now.

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